Re: virus: Discoveries and Inventions

Peter Charlot (
Wed, 5 Feb 1997 11:15:27 -1000

>Are memes substantive things (like atoms or molecules), or is memetics an
>empirical model?

May someone new join the fray?

Being a Heuristically evolved autocataclytic memetic-algorithm complex
myself I'd like to suggest that the research being done on computer genetic
algorithms is a model we might use to find a naturally occuring
memetic-algorithms. This "discovery" would be a substantial indication of
the validity of memetics as a science. My own guess is that the cortex is a
memetic-algorithm generator. Believing this, I don't ascribe to memes as
totally free agents.

This system evolved from primate brain and is, in effect, evolution
evolving a 3-D model of itself, one that is able to play-out scenarios
performed by self-sustaining "characters." At first the memetic-characters
were the creatures and forest that surrounded the proto-human. In time
these jungle reflected memetic-algorithms began to breakup, so to speak, and
reform into non-linear forms that resulted into ideas as we experience
them. One character in this jungle is the character of self. Currently, the
self character is playing out scenarios having to do with consciousness and
free will. These particular scenarios have proved themselves very
successful, but they are misleading in the extreme. The illusion of
consciousness creates an adaptability factor probably equal to the
flexibility "zero" gave mathematics, but it simultaneously diverts us from
objective inquiry into self.

The ideas we use now are still, in effect, representaves of the jungle that
surrounds us and they interact with each other, heuristically playing out
(as in football practice, or an E-mail group) possible strategies regarding
the past, present and future. This enormously useful device, this
evolutionary theatre (quite the inverse of Cartesian theatre) did not come
with a free pass though. Nature does not give things away. The primate
personality still retains propietary rights. Memetic-algorithm complexes,
what you call memes, are still very much servants, in that the fundamental
genetic directives are still in tact, and can and do exert themselves
maintaining the homo-sapien personality or philosophy (Raise your family,
ignore the riff-raff.) This philosophy persists, regardless of whatever
scenarios are created in the cortex, or transfeerred exo-cranially. In this
regard I disagree with what seems to be the accepted principle of
unregulated memetic evolution.

Over all though, regarding the Church of Virus, why not incorporate the
thousands of years of Taoist philosophy, a philosophy based on the
observation of natural patterns, including the patterns of the mind. Doing
so might save the group a few eons, and we could get on to C of V missionary
work. I vote for pairs of guys riding bicycles, wearing tan slacks, brown
shoes, aloha shirts, and carrying black books that look like bibles but are
actually blank pages.

Adore the group, I'm glad you are all here,


Note to D. Rosdeitcher: It's a schism, not a war.